Woolworths to merge and separate drinks and hospitality business
Sydney based Australia and New Zealand retail giant Woolworths Group has announced its intention to merge its drinks and hospitality businesses and then separate them from the business.
The move comes amidst controversy over the role of poker machines and gambling in large Australian retailers. Woolworths said the separation would provide it with a simplified structure, allowing it to focus on its core business.
Endeavour Drinks and hospitality business ALH Group are to be merged into a single entity known as Endeavour Group Limited, with that business expected to be demerged in 2020.
Woolworths Group Chairman, Gordon Cairns, said: “The Board believes that a merger of Endeavour Drinks and ALH followed by a separation, is in shareholders’ best interests and will benefit customers and team members of both groups. The decision has been taken after consideration of the future prospects of both businesses and how they can be best realised. It reflects the Board’s focus on maximising long-term shareholder value.”
“Over the past three years we have progressively moved from a period of fixing the basics as part of our turnaround to investing for the future as part of our transformation,” said Woolworths Group CEO, Brad Banducci. “As we look to build customer differentiation in all of our businesses, and prepare for an agile and digitally-enabled future, we have decided to simplify Woolworths Group through a combination and subsequent separation of Endeavour Group.”
As reported in the Guardian, Woolworths shares increased by over 1%, reaching AU$34.02. Woolworths is listed on the ASX under the symbol “WOW”.
Amobee Appoints Nick Brien As CEO
In its latest strategic move, Amobee—a global multimedia advertising leader—announced that Nick Brien will be its Chief Executive Officer. The company is entirely owned by Singtel, Asia’s leading communications technology organisation, which provides consumers with mobile, broadband, and TV and businesses with data hosting, cloud, network infrastructure, analytics, and cybersecurity tools.
Brien, who has worked for Microsoft, Intel, P&G, and American Express, will take over to drive the next generation of advertising tech. Said Evangelos Simoudis, Chairman of the Board of Amobee: ‘Nick has the deep expertise in advertising that we need to seize the market opportunities ahead’.
How Did Brien Get Here?
Before joining Amobee, Brien led 15,000 people across 40 divisions as CEO of the Americas for Dentsu International. For thirty years, he’s helped brands pilot unique advertisements, keeping up with the latest trends. He’s served as CEO of McCann Worldgroup, global CEO of IPG Mediabrands, President of Hearst Marketing Services, and CEO of iCrossing. Over the course of his career, he’s consistently strategised how to keep up with digital shifts. Now, he’ll capitalise on Amobee’s legions of experienced data scientists and developers.
‘I’m excited to be joining Amobee at such a transformative time in our industry’, Brien explained. ‘We’ll pilot advertising accountability and intelligent decisioning. And there’s no doubt in my mind that optimising media performance—whether you’re targeting, planning, buying, or delivering—can only be achieved using applied science, machine learning, and data analytics’.
What Does This Mean for Amobee?
Amobee is set on growing its personal brand within the advertising sector. As APAC social media influencers, Gen Z growth hackers, and viral content producers start to enter the field, established companies will be working doubly hard to keep up. Amobee, however, is still looking good. With a Gartner Magic Quadrant for Ad Tech, a Forrester New Wave recognition, and now, Nick Brien as CEO, the firm is set up for success.